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Bishop Charles Blake We Still Have A Problem! Sex, Lies, & More Rape
10 Action Steps That Could Help Bishop Blake Protect Members From Predatory Pastors
PimpPreacher.com New Orleans Bureau 01/05/2011
As the Church of God in Christ kicked off its 104th Holy Convocation in St. Louis this week, many COGIC reformers are wondering when or if Bishop Charles E. Blake will address the ongoing issues of sexual molestation within his organization. Two years ago we (the staff at PimpPreacher.com) gave the newly appointed Bishop a pass on many of the ills facing COGIC, but as another Bishop has been indicted, we have no other choice then to deal with the HNIC - Bishop Charles E. Blake.
It now seems that we cannot go three months without hearing something of a sexual nature involving COGIC pastors and one of its members. I will not use this article to chronicle every one of them, but for the sake of time I will review the most recent indictment for rape.
And Another One
An Orleans Parish grand jury this week handed up an indictment against the spiritual head of a local Pentecostal church, accusing him of sexual crimes against three juveniles dating as far back as 1977.
Bishop Charles E. Brown faces a count of forcible rape and two counts each of sexual battery and committing a lewd act on a juvenile. Bond has been set at $900,000.
A familiar figure on the religious landscape of New Orleans before Hurricane Katrina, Brown has since divided his time between New Orleans and Houston.
Brown is the jurisdictional bishop for Greater New Orleans in the Church of God in Christ, headquartered in Memphis, Tenn. He also is pastor of Full Gospel Church of God in Christ in New Orleans. A spokesman for The Church of God in Christ said the church suspended Brown after learning of the first allegation, which came to light in September.
Police originally booked Brown, who turned 59 Thursday, with aggravated rape on June 28, after an unidentified 39-year-old woman called the NOPD's child abuse unit in March to report that Brown had molested her between the ages of 14 and 16.
According to a police affidavit, the woman said that Brown had been her aunt's boyfriend and committed the acts at his home. She told police that Brown recently reached out to "friend" her on the Facebook social networking site. She called him out as an abuser and went to police, the affidavit said. Brown turned himself in and made $25,000 bail after Magistrate Commissioner Harry Cantrell lowered the charge to sexual battery.
Since then, at least two other people have come forward with accusations against him, according to the indictment. One of them, now 47, was under 17 when Brown committed indecent behavior and sexual battery sometime between the accuser's 13th and 17th birthdays, according to the indictment.
Brown forcibly raped another woman, identified only as "G.H.," in 1977, when the alleged victim was 17, the indictment states. A brief police report said the woman reported the incident Sept. 28, a week after The Times-Picayune reported on the first allegation.
The woman said Brown used his hands, feet and a fist to keep her from resisting.
There is no statute of limitations for forcible rape in Louisiana. State law allows prosecution of sexual battery, indecent behavior with a juvenile or other sex crimes against people under 17 for 30 years after the victim becomes an adult.
Prosecution can be difficult, however, said Judy Benitez, executive director of the Louisiana Foundation Against Sexual Assault.
"The main thing is, in a lot of these cases there isn't a whole lot of evidence, particularly long after the fact," Benitez said. "But it's very important that people realize the eyewitness testimony of the victim is sufficient to convict. The judge or jury, if they believe the victim, they don't need DNA. They don't need a tape of the crime in progress."
Brown's whereabouts are unclear. Court records do not name an attorney for him, and a phone number for his home in Houston was not working Friday. He had not been booked into the Orleans Parish jail on the charges in the indictment as of late Friday.
Why Are We Here?
This latest case in New Orleans is one of many, and makes me wonder why this issue of molestation prevention isn’t the sole purpose of this year Holy Convocation? What is the reason for getting together every year if you’re never going to deal with the current issues of that year?
For once I would like to see real leadership in the Office of Bishop at the Church of God In Christ headquarters. As a former member of the Church of God in Christ, I have heard accounts for years about various so-called Bishops and Elders, therefore the leaders of COGIC at the highest level should be fully aware of the need to take immediate action. Nevertheless, every year members of this denomination gather for was has been reduced to a ridiculous parading of flesh.
A Call To Action
Bishop Blake I like you, therefore I am going to help you with your leadership & organizational development deficiencies at no cost to you. Listed below are 10 immediate steps you can take that will place every pastor under your authority on notice that you will not tolerate another case of sexual assault.
- 1. I want you to contact every District Attorney in the cities where your churches are located. The next thing I want you to do is to introduce yourself and provide the DA with your direct phone number in case he needs to inquire about one of your pastors.
- 2. Inform the DA that COGIC will not only cooperate in any, and all investigations involving the rape of a WIC (Woman, Infant, Child) but also participate in the prosecution of the accused individuals.
- 3. Contact every Pastor under your authority and notify them that you have reached out to the DA in their local county and have made them aware that COGIC has a zero tolerance for sexual predators.
- 4. Call a national press conference to make every member of COGIC aware of your new anonymous rape reporting system called R.U.S.H (RUSH – Rape Unit & Sexual Harassment) which will put members directly in touch with Law Enforcement and Church Officials. Appoint a RUSH Bishop who is also a member of Law Enforcement to oversee and follow up on all reported allegations of rape.
- 5. Promote a woman to one of your high ranking positions that will serve as a true advocate for members who are being exploited by Predatory Pastors.
- 6. At every Convocation in the future read out loud the names of every Pastor/ Edler that was removed from the organization for reasons of sexual crimes, theft, and false teachings.
- 7. Halt the promotion of future bishops until you have established a true system of screening, discerning, and profiling of potential church leaders. Create an actual certification in which all current and future church leaders will have to attend (this can be held regionally).
- 8. Travel throughout this country and apologize to the victims of COGIC pastors whose claims were ignored and challenged in the past under the previous system of silence, and abuse.
- 9. Form partnerships with the Department of Social Services, Court Advocates, and Victims of Rape Alliances in order to have a direct contact with the issues facing many of the victims of molestation and rape.
- 10. Don’t be afraid to lead in this area of accountability and purging. It is up to the leader to define his organization, and up until now Bishop Blake you have allowed the sexual predators to taint the legacy of The Church of God in Christ. Your appointment was not for the glamour but for the grunt work, a vital assignment that must be to adhered to if you desire to detour your denomination off this dark and muddy road.
Bishop Charles E. Blake you can no longer hide behind “didn’t know” or “wasn’t aware” because now you know, and knowing is half the battle. Prepare yourself for war against the infestation of perverts embedded within your organization and show the world your position. Prove to us that you love the Church as Christ loved the Church in his willingness to die for it. Love means more as verb than it ever will as an adjective. The only question that remains is; Do you love your members?
1. As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.
2. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?
3. My tears have been my meat day and night, while they continually say unto me, Where is thy God?
4. When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me: for I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday.
5. Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.